The early days of aviation
Alois Wolfmüller conducted flight experiments with this glider near his hometown of Landsberg am Lech in 1907 and 1908.
Alois Wolfmüller (1864-1948)began experimenting as a child with kites, free-flying models, and gliders able to carry a man. However, he was never able to reach the level of the technology of his time. He purchased a “Normal-Segelapparat” from Otto Lilienthal in 1894. He recognized the weaknesses of Lilienthal’s method of steering by shifting the center of gravity. In Wolfmüller’s construction, control of the apparatus is directed by the “pilot” sitting on a narrow board. The pilot wears a type of “corset” around his upper body which transfers his movements to the ruder, the elevator, and revolving flaps in the lower wings.
Alois Wolfmüller donated the glider to the Deutsches Museum in 1934. As exhibited here it is largely in its original state. The horizontal tail was missing. It was not found until 1991 and is here on loan from the Neues Stadtmuseum, Landsberg am Lech.
- Wing span: 6.3 m
- Length: 6.8 m
- Height: 2.7 m2
- Wing area: 21 m
- Weight: 38 kg